Preparing to move

Well, barring something disastrous – touch wood – it’s goodbye to England and hello to France in two weeks’ time.

The movers and cat transporters are booked, our temporary rental home in France awaits us and is aired and tidy after we spent a few days there last week, a French bank account has been set up and all the necessary paperwork involved in moving to a foreign country has been sorted out as much as it can be.

The plan is to rent for a few months and look around for somewhere to buy.

We love the Mayenne region. It’s got an agricultural economy, isn’t touristy, property bargains are to be had and it’s beautiful countryside. It’s two hours from a ferry port – Caen – and this means we can come back here for visits and friends and relations can visit us. We’re renting there and will hope to buy there too.

Elsewhere on this wonderful world wide web thingy, someone recently accused me of ‘running away‘ which couldn’t be further from the truth.

Basically I’m retiring to France as it offers us more for our money in terms of property and a slightly less frenetic pace of life – especially if we end up living in rural surroundings, as planned.

I’ve worked all my working life, paid all my taxes and never claimed a penny from the State in terms of welfare benefits. We can buy a detached and fully habitable house with an acre of land for a fraction of what it would cost here and, now that we’ve both managed to retire early, I’d like to settle with Mrs Shark somewhere peaceful and enjoy the fruits of our labour.

We just couldn’t do that in this country so, as we both love France and have spent many, many holidays there, it’s a no-brainer. We both speak French reasonably well and like the French people we’ve met over the years and French society, on the whole, still respects the individual’s right to get on with life without too much State interference – certainly not to the level it’s escalated to here.

Mrs Shark, the two cats, a house in the country and a bit of land to work on. It all sounds good to me…